Tag: Horror

Birdboy: The Forgotten Children

Birdboy: The Forgotten Children will probably be the last animated film I see from 2017. That is, unless some anime film I missed comes out in April or Summer, all late in the United States.

This too was a foreign animated film, based on a graphic novel. It was originally released in Spain (and Spanish), but the version I watched was dubbed.

I knew nothing about the film going in, except that it might be weird. And unfortunately, that too was an understatement.

Yay animals! Time for a cute film!

This film takes place on an Island, far away from other lands. It had a peaceful animal community, that could talk, sure. Things were good, until factories joined their island. Eventually, the factories have an accident and a big blast rips through their island, killing hundreds, destroying the buildings in that area, creating rubble. No good at all.

This leads the land changed. It makes it sad. It makes it just feel, dead.

The families are now bitter. Kids are being non conformists, animals are fighting, animals are killing. And everyone is just rude.

Poor Birdboy, lost his dad, and can´t even get back to his lighthouse home. There are demons in there, and he hasn´t yet mastered how to fly.

He has friends, namely Dinky, a female mouse, are the only ones who care about him. She cares about him a lot. With the help of a fox and a rabbit, the gang plan to escape off of the island in a boat, to get away from this place of dissidence and sadness. But the island does not want them to leave. Its citizens are too bitter to allow a thing such as hope help anyone.

The four are going to struggle and face their fears, which is unfortunate, because in this case their fears are very real and dangerous parts of society.

Featuring the voices of Barbara Goodson, Jon Avner, Sofia Bryant, Dean Flanagan, Marc Diraison, Wayne Grayson, Yuri Lowenthal, Jake Paque, and Alyson Leigh Rosenfeld.

Learning to fly is also, unfortunately, a dangerous and very consequence heavy fear.

Yeah, Birdboy was weird. It was also terrifying. It was gruesome. It was nothing like I expected.

The only thing I know to compare it to is Heavy Metal, but that is based on my incredibly limited knowledge on this sort of animated film. And Heavy Metal was more sexy. We also had Nerdland recently, that was graphic in its own ways. This one is graphic in that it involves kid animals, in a disgusting world, dealing with entities trying to kill them and kill each other. We have bulging eyes, red veins, abuse, drugs, everything that would negatively affect a society, rolled into one tiny island.

It is definitely not for the light of heart.

It is a sad movie, with not really a happy ending either. Sure, maybe some hope is derived from it, but it is just a movie that will tear at your heart. Not like a romance, but like a horror, tearing at your heart.

And also, it is very, very confusing. I assumed the graphic novel tells the story a bit better. But there are sequences in this movie out of order, not a lot of exposition, and when I left I just felt confused. I did Wikipedia the plot outline, which is thankfully very detailed. I recognized some events and some scenes and could imagine them all working together, but it is not very easy to do that on your first viewing.

I appreciate that Birdboy is incredibly dark. I appreciate that the artistic style really draws you in and spits you out. I also appreciate that it tried to do something new. But in the end, it was not a very coherent plot, hard to follow, and left me feeling more empty than anything at the end.

2 out of 4.

Wish Upon

Sometimes it is really hard to remember all the genre specific films that come out in a year. Especially 2017 and horror.

When did Wish Upon come out? I don’t remember. I might have gotten an invite, but I don’t remember. Did I choose to not go, or was there something better to watch? Who fucking knows!

But at the end of the year, Wish Upon was already out, and I gave it a check because of the name and I knew that some shitty horror films had to be out there as well. And our star was not used to the leading role, but she was used to some horror films, so there was potential.

I bet the word viral is used in this movie at least twice.

Clare Shannon (Joey King) is your typical high school outcast. Small group of friends (Sydney Park, Shannon Purser), into some weird hobbies, sort of poor, normal stuff. Here mom (Elisabeth Röhm) committed suicide when she was younger, which haunts her occasionally. Her dad (Ryan Phillippe) has an embarrassing trait where he likes to dumpster dive for treasure for friends, but really it just makes him a hoarder and their house is a disaster.

And then one day, he finds a Chinese box that looks cool and leaves it in her room. She only dabbles in the language, and can see that it has wish on it, so for the lolz, she wishes this bully girl at school (Josephine Langford) will just rot away. And lo and behold! She gets a disease on her face and doesn’t return to school. Hooray!

However, this wish box has a deadly side. Every time it grants a wish, an entity the wisher knows will die. And if the wishes ever get used up, their own soul will be taken as well. But she doesn’t know Chinese, let alone ancient! And her old friend (Ki Hong Lee) can only help her so much, especially if she doesn’t listen. Time to wish for stupid stuff, consequences be damned!

Also starring Mitchell Slaggert.

Behold, foreign mysticism as your villainous holder of items!

A horror movies where wishes don’t go as expected? That isn’t new at all. But these wishes basically work out well, except for the whole dead friends or neighbors or family members part. However, it takes way too long for the lead to realize the wishes are real, happening, and the box is the culprit.

By the time she for sure knows, she also knows she has seven max. She has done four of seven, and knows that she is running out, and that it brings danger to people. And she fucking wishes her fifth wish for school popularity.

It is so goddamn stupid. That is the sort of wish you can imagine in the first three, maybe, especially when testing to see if it worked. But at this point in the film, it is already clear the writers had lost their goddamn minds.

Wish Upon takes a regular story and tries to add some Final Destination elements to it. Because they quickly start playing up the deaths, so we can sort of guess and see how they will die. Or even WHO will die, as they show multiple characters in potentially deadly circumstances. But they feel cheesy and not scary, unlike the FD franchise.

And really, the ending is horseshit as well. This is a horror film about a girl of below intelligence, who thinks she is above average intelligence, and then some people die.

0 out of 4.

Mom and Dad

When I sat down to watch Mom and Dad, I did not know I was sitting down to watch Mom and Dad.

It was a secret screening at the Alamo Drafthouse, apparently everyone there knew what was happening except for about me and five or so others, due to inner circles and all. I learned it was by Brian Taylor, who did the Crank films, Gamer, and the second Ghost Rider.

And believe you and me, if someone had told me before I bought the ticket, before I showed up, if I knew what it was and what it was about, I definitely would not have wanted to come.

A whole film about rich people eating breakfast and arguing?!

Brent (Nicolas Cage) and Kendall Ryan (Selma Blair) have been married and together for decades, so of course they have two kids. Before hand, Brent used to be quite the wild guy. Sowing his seed, driving his muscle car, loud music, athletic and more. Kendall had career aspirations, travel plans and general life goals, but then out came Carly (Anne Winters).

One wasn’t enough, and they waited way too long because they also had Josh (Zackary Arthur) many years later. So much that Carly is a sophomore in high school now, and Josh is confusingly aged. I mean, I guess he isn’t in kindergarten yet, but also, he is clearly like 9 or 10. Odd.

Needless to say, both kids can be buttholes. They have ruined their parents lives by merely existing. The daughter is stereotypically bitchy and hating of her parents, the boy is just super annoying, messy, and ruining his dad’s stuff.

This is a lot of introduction to say, that HOLY SHIT. SOMETHING HAPPENS, A TERRORIST ATTACK, BIOLOGICAL OR TECH, WHO KNOWS. But the instincts that parents have to protect and go to great lengths for their kids, get reversed, so that they only want to kill their kids, at all possible, no regrets at all.

Yep, a lot of family on family death is about to go on.

Also starring Joseph D. Reitman, Lance Henriksen, Olivia Crocicchia, Rachel Melvin, and Robert T. Cunningham.

Mad mad
Nicolas Cage at his cage-iest.

Since the birth of my daughter, parent/kid things in film, heartfelt moments and the like, they have all made me sadder. I cry all the time. When I found out where this movie was going, I was absolutely horrified. I mean, could I handle it? Did I need to get up and leave?

In reality, I only really needed to put my hands in front of my eyes in frightful anticipation only a few times, but especially during the hospital scene. The flashbacks in the film were very helpful, breaking up the very fast pace of the film, to give us some strangely touching scenes with Cage/Blair.

Okay let’s back up. Early in the film, you could tell something very strange and new was happening. The shots were so quick and dynamic, with lens flares, for seemingly regular ordinary things. It really put the viewer on a state of panic early on, even if there was only one bad thing to happen at the start. It helped lead up to the dread and panic that was to come, allowing the viewer to transition nicely into the full on freak out mode.

And let me iterate, I think the idea behind this film is terrible. And terrifying. Extremely fucked up. It took me many months into 2017 before I reached the most fucked up film of that year (mother!), but I can’t imagine anything topping this one, and it is two goddamn weeks into the next year! The reason I am mainly giving it a higher review because it definitely frightened me, it made me feel, and it didn’t get extremely exploitative at the same time.

Oh, some exploitative, sure. Just not extremely exploitative.

3 out of 4.

The Killing of a Sacred Deer

I am frequently reminded that I should be watching more of Yorgos Lanthimos‘s movies. And not just because he is a guy who keeps bringing some out.

My first experience with his film was The Lobster a year ago and it definitely was an experience. I hadn’t seen any of his previous work, but The Lobster was so far out there that I knew this was a director who wanted to do his own thing and not give a shit about what people thought about it. This is the same thought that Terrence Malick must have, but I don’t like his work.

And now he has The Killing of a Sacred Deer, which is wonderful on its own thanks to the trailers. They told me nothing about the movie, but it was visually sexy and clearly different from The Lobster at the same time.

I really should get around to watching Dogtooth, but he has another movie coming out next year, so we will see if it ever happens.

Damn right you eat that spaghetti now. Don’t want it falling out of your pockets later.

Steven Murphy (Colin Farrell) is a really good surgeon. Well, most surgeons are good. I only assume he is good because he is rich, and surgeons are generally rich after they pay off those loans. He has a wife (Nicole Kidman) and two kids (Raffey Cassidy, Sunny Suljic), the typical American household and life. Everything is going so swell.

Steven is also friends with some boy named Martin (Barry Keoghan), who is older than his kids. Martin is a bit slower developmentally, but he lives with his mom only. He had a dad, but the dad died several years ago in a car crash, and Steven has been sort of a mentor to Martin ever since.

But Steven starts to act a bit stranger than normal, and he has already been a strange kid. After introducing Steven to his family, strange events start to occur to his family. A paralyzation affects his son so that he cannot walk and all of the big fancy doctor tests cannot tell them why. That is only the beginning of the problems that affect their family and it seems to have to do with Martin. But why? Why is the big question.

Also starring Alicia Silverstone and Bill Camp.

This might be right after his heart was with a text message.

The Killing of a Sacred Deer is a quiet film with an unsettling plot behind it, that I chose to not fully reveal. Given the choice our main character ends up making it is something ripe for sadness and anger by many viewers. Good, good, let the emotion flow out of us.

I honestly had no idea where the movie was going on, and once the plot gets fully revealed (which is does VERY quickly and seemingly out of nowhere), every moment gets a little bit scarier. Keoghan has one of the more punchable faces I have ever seen in film, true here and in Dunkirk, but it really works with the character they created. He is unnerving, but not in a cartoon villain sort of way. I will say the film didn’t really do enough to explain his actions or his own mental capacity, so it should definitely be dinged for these reasons.

But let’s just say, some shit is up, it affects this family quite unfairly, and we have to watch most of a film as they deal with shit that continually escalates until a final decision is finally reached. After all the build up, the ending itself was pretty shocking when it came to the hows, the whys, and the whos, but it also makes sense in an eerie way. After all, it is an eerie movie about some people with some strange feelings about reality, so it is also fitting.

The Killing of a Sacred Deer is a creepy film with some horrifying moments, but one that could have been better with a lot more backstory and explanation when it comes to a few characters. Less can be more, but I think this film had too much less.

3 out of 4.


2017 was a great year for horror. It exceeded my generally low expectations for the genre. It exceeded in a way that is inverse to the way that animation was a disappointment.

So I was a bit suspect of finding another good horror film after all the rest. But Raw looked really good despite knowing very little about it. I knew it would make me uncomfortable, it would have gore, and has shit ton of blood.

Heck, I didn’t even know it was a French film until it started and I got blasted with subtitles. Adding the foreign element is what made me realize early on that maybe it could also be great, because I knew America must have reached its peak.

There hasn’t been this much blood in a film since Army of Darkness. Which is arguably British.

Justine (Garance Marillier) comes from a very uppity family who expect good things out of her. She just got accepted into veternarian school and is excited about making the world a better place for animals. Her older sister, Alexia (Ella Rumpf) has already been there for a year and will help her get situated. Oh, and her entire family is vegetarian, they have been her whole life, and that is obviously relevant to the plot.

Now in France, I am led to believe that getting into a specialized school like this one is sort of like getting into a fraternity in America. They have hazing for the new recruits and a rush week, but it isn’t really optional since it is just everyone in the school. They have to submit, or else. As part of the submission, they get dumped with animal blood before important photos and are also forced to eat raw rabbit kidneys as part of their initiation.

So Justine doesn’t want to do that, she has NEVER eaten meat, and she doesn’t want to start now. She tries to get her sister’s help, but the sister denies their vegetarian upbringing and eats a kidney, so Justine has to as well. This does not go well, as she immediately feels sick. Hell, she ends up getting some sort of food allergy symptoms as well from it. No good.

And yet, his opens up something in Justine. She starts to crave meat, but made a big deal about being a vegetarian as well. So her gay roommate (Rabah Nait Oufella) tries to help her sneak this new obsession without others noticing. But it isn’t enough. Justine is constantly hungry, constantly looking for more and more. And you know where this obsession is leading.

Also starring Laurent Lucas, Joana Preiss, and Jean-Louis Sbille.

Keep working on the Andrew W.K. cosplay little girl.

(Don’t say it, don’t say it, don’t say it) Raw felt like a very authentic (whew) tale about, well, some cannibalism. Not a lot of cannibalism, just some. It had human emotions, it had great realistic actions from unrealistic situations, and the whole thing just felt raw. Fuck, I made the pun. That didn’t last long at all.

But seriously. I didn’t even know Raw was French when I went to see it. I have heard it hyped for a half a year and just assumed another indie horror film that gets rave reviews. It is good to see another country coming up strong with new ideas.

Raw has a some gross scenes and they just happen sometimes so unexpectedly it will take you by surprise. It doesn’t shy away from sexuality and hazing, normal college experiences, it just adds some extra human elements. Again, please understand I am referring to the eating of humans.

Raw is gross, it is creepy, it is well made, and yes, it is raw.

3 out of 4.

Insidious: The Last Key

Insidious here, get your insidious here! Can’t get enough of those James Wan other worldly horror films? Then we got a new one here!

At this point it is the fourth Insidious film, but we are delving straight into the side story parts now. We don’t get a number, we get Insidious: The Last Key. It took Paranormal Activity to get to film 5 before it abandoned their numbers for a side story instead.

Just because there is a last in the title, don’t assume it is the last Insidious film. That is a lie in every horror franchise, no matter what they say.

Instead, at this point, go in expecting some more details and unfortunately a lot more questions.

It is important to have your security look nice before they fuck up a spirit.

Our favorite psychic, Elise Rainier (Lin Shaye), didn’t have a fun time growing up. This takes place after Chapter 3, and before the first film still, where she is rocking out with her two sidekicks, Tucker (Angus Sampson) and Specs (Leigh Whannell). Except she gets a call from a dude (Kirk Acevedo), who lives in Five Keys, New Mexico. Specifically, he lives in the home she grew up in. And again, this was not fun.

You see, Elise basically always had this ability. The skills to see dead spirits, talk to them, and really feel their pain. While it is cool for old Elise to do that, young girl Elise doing it made it really creepy. Her dad (Josh Stewart), worked at the next door prison (which had a high execution rate I guess), and he didn’t like her saying she saw things. He did the only logical thing in his mind, in the 1960’s, and he had to beat it out of her every time she decided to lie about ghosts.

Hooray child abuse! Oh yes, we get a lot of pained girl screams and pleads for those who need to feel sad inside.

Anyways, also as a kid, Elise was visited by demons, helped free a powerful thing, and inadvertently killed her mom? Jeez. Either way, now, a billion years later, Elise has to return to the home that has too many memories, to hopefully put a stop to what started her a long time before.

Also starring in the past and the present ish, Caitlin Gerard, Spencer Locke, Aleque Reid, Ava Kolker, Pierce Pope, Bruce Davison, and Tessa Ferrer.

Breasts and horror go together sure, but sometimes even fully clothed it can feel excessive.

The beginning of the film is probably the best part of it, so after the long introduction of 10+ minutes (it feels like), just go ahead and leave. We start in the 60’s, it is creepy, we get the child abuse, the arguments, the scares, the creepy key stuff, and the deaths. Once we get back to modernish times, the film quickly just falls apart.

Sure, the sidekicks have some good jokes. And they tried to make some sort of coherent plot, that had its moments. The suitcase scare later on is bound to be a highlight.

But every damn time they go into The Further it just feels so goddamn stupid. And a significant portion takes place there, along with multiple entities and places. It just feels like they are just making up that place as they go, and whatever happens there is what a writer feels like doing, with no limits or cares in the world! It especially featured the worst acting of the film and the effects were, well, ghastly.

Don’t worry, we have tons of bad acting throughout the film as well. We get someone who is in his 70’s playing the dad to two daughters who are clearly supposed to be early 20’s and not apparently be awkward at all. An easy fix of saying “Granddaughters” instead would have made it less weird. Speaking of weird, the daughters have a lot more plot than one would expect. One of them is featured above and it is honestly the worst time I have seen a horror film try to also make a scary scene sexy. Imagine her having a panic attack on the ground, breathing up and down very hard. It isn’t sexy, no matter how much the boobs move, it is just uncomfortable and takings you out of the film.

The acting is bad in the flashbacks, and generally just bad when really any character interacts with any other character. It certainly doesn’t feel like the end of a series, but really, the beginning. But again, the beginning was neat, and some jokes made me laugh.

1 out of 4.

Happy Death Day

Get Out did a lot of things for movies in 2017. It started the year off with a bang (a bang that I think Split also helped open) where it was definitely some sort of horror film, but with other genres molded into it. The comedy elements that normally turn something into a parody film were present, helpful, but not overshadowing.

Those movies helped pave the way for something like Happy Death Day to be released. A film taking a familiar concept (reliving a day over and over) and tacking on a serial killer. Great. We have a reason for the day to be relived, we have a horror element which is new, and we have a goddamn mystery.

I remember missing this movie earlier in the year because four screenings were happening at the same time, so I ended up picking Professor Marston and the Wonder Women, which honestly still feels like the right move. But I had high hopes for this film, let’s just say that.

I also had high hopes for a big lavish birthday cake, but fuck me right?

Tree Gelbman (Jessica Rothe) has a stupid name, but that won´t bring her down. She is in college, she is smart enough, she likes to drink and party and is in an amazing sorority. She is sleeping with a professor for grades (And love?), and yes, it is in fact her birthday.

She woke up unfortunately not in her own bed, but in the bed of some boy named Carter (Israel Broussard). She doesn´t know him, she was drunk, clearly mistakes were made. Oh well, she can walk of shame it to her house for her birthday, no biggy. She just has to deal with other dumb college people, her annoying roommate (Ruby Modine), trying to sex up her professor (Charles Aitkin) without his wife (Laura Clifton) knowing, and of course, dealing with Sorority Drama.

But on the way to what is most certainly a surprise party for her, something strange happens. She gets murdered by someone in a big baby mask, straight up killed. And after she dies, she wakes up, back in Carter´s bed, confused and scared. Thinking it is some really intense dejavu, she goes on like normal, only changing up her route to the party, and sure enough, she finds herself dead, again, and back in Carter´s room. Oh no.

For some reason, Tree is dying every night by someone murdering her in the face, and she is waking up each day, more and more tired and concerned for her safety. She has to enlist help to determine who the killer is, but it is like everyone she needs to help her has short term memory. It sucks. Worst birthday ever.

Also starring Rachel Matthews, Rob Mello, Jason Bayle, and Phi Vu.

Baby got a bat, better run run run.

Overall, I found Happy Death Day to be pretty disappointing.

When it comes to uniqueness, it only is unique in that the other repeated day stories and movies did not have horror elements. Or at least that wasn’t their main element. But can a repeated day film really be that scary? Well, for the most part, there will not be a sense of surprise. We know that she makes it until the end of the day, and unless it is purely random when she gets stabbed (it isn’t), then we know when to expect stabbing. It is hard to get scared in these situations, so the movie doesn’t work well as a horror.

On the comedy side, it too was weak. Most of the comedy came from the occasional weird kill, but a lot of it was just regular interactions between college students. Parts were amusing, but nothing really would cause someone to laugh out loud. As you can see, this is a multi-genre film that doesn’t really do great at any genre.

The main character is such a lame character, that no one would ever root for her. She is a mean sorority girl, and frankly, her getting killed doesn’t seem like a big deal. We can have films about unlikable characters, but that doesn’t mean we should want to root for them.

The ending is also a dud, where the main red hearing based solution is just so nonsensical, it is annoying how they wasted so much time on it. Any viewer would know it is incorrect, but we have to suffer through almost 30 minutes (it feels like) on that notion that it is excruciating.

Happy Death Day is a movie with a good idea, just terrible execution all around.

1 out of 4.

Tragedy Girls

If it wasn’t for indie movie theaters in my area, I would have never heard of Tragedy Girls. It is the type of film with the type of name that is just so easy to ignore. If I saw it on a list of DVD releases in the future, I would have just assumed it was a Lifetime or CW film and just actively ignored it.

Back in the day I would have watched everything, but now I find myself with a semblance of a life, certain sorts of films just get ignored.

Thankfully I was given a screener and had enough free time to throw it on. Although to be honest, I wanted to watch the documentary 78/52 instead, but technical difficulties led me to Tragedy Girls (which again, I was only given an invite due to an indie film in the area).

Nowadays in school they don’t fight the cell phone problem but apparently just let it all run wild.

Two girls, one twitter account. Sadie Cunningham (Brianna Hildebrand) and McKayla Hooper (Alexandra Shipp) have dreams of one day being famous. They also have dreams of finding out who a local serial killer is in time, and using that knowledge to get them famous. They have a twitter account, called @TrageyGirls to post rumors and news or videos about death in their town, but no one will take them seriously.

And you know what they do right away? Catch the serial killer (Kevin Durand)! But a caught serial killer isn’t too interesting, if he goes away, how will they continue to talk about new deaths?

So the two ladies keep him tied up in a hidden shack and decide the best way for them to get famous is to keep killing in his name. Their task is a hard one, as they have to not get caught and make the kills look like real kills, not just accidents. The good news is, they can kill anyone they want, whoever is trying to get in their way to success. Or just anyone who takes the spotlight away from them.

Also starring Josh Hutcherson, Craig Robinson, Jack Quaid, Timothy V. Murphy, Savannah Jayde, and Rosalind Chao.

The most surprising stats are their cameos and how many of them were also in The Hunger Games.

Tragedy Girls seemingly came out of nowhere. A film I never heard about, with leads I have seen barely before, with smaller roles from legit stars, and it stood its own ground.

A bit satire/parody, a bit comedy/horror on its own rights, Tragedy Girls felt really fresh through a majority of the movie. Its gore never reached the level of Tucker and Dale vs Evil, but it had some very creative deaths to keep you shocked and amused. The leads are really charismatic and easy to cheer on their bad deeds.

The film is only a little bit creative though. The ending wasn´t too hard to determine, or where the plot would take the viewer. It is creative in how modern it made it, its take on serial killers, and a little bit of woman power. It is definitely refreshing in that it isn´t just a slasher, and the jokes are dark in nature and not just bullshit slapstick or references.

Tragedy Girls will probably become a cult classic at some point. Really, the only thing that could have made it better would have been some musical scenes. Or at least a tap dance number.

3 out of 4.

Friend Request

From the title alone, I understand that Friend Request will make you think of Unfriended. It is about social media, teens, and horror.

Unfriended was hated by basically everyone except for me. I enjoyed how creative it was and well, that is it. It was creative. I am fine with movies pushing their mediums further. It was cheesy a bit, but at the same time, it had me terrified. I was on the internet too much.

Friend Request did not make me rethink social media at all, it just made me rethink the choices that made me go and see Friend Request.

“So the evil is INSIDE the computer?”

We are going to examine Laura (Alycia Debnam-Carey), a popular girl on Facebook, with 800+ friends. Which yeah, is just your regular college girl amount really. She hangs out with her BFFs (Brit Morgan, Brooke Markham), doing college stuff. Laura is a Psychology major, so you know she is serious about her education as well.

And in her psychology class, there is Marina (Liesl Ahlers), a girl who wears black and looks weird. She has zero facebook friends, until she sends a request to Laura, and Laura just accepts anything. This makes Marina happy. She also sends Laura messages all the time, but she has creepy Facebook posts and is a bit unsettling. So of course Laura unfriends her, and surprise, Marina flips her shit and kills herself.

And now, Laura’s Facebook is basically haunted. She can’t delete messages, she can’t send anything, and she can’t delete it. The Facebook begins to post things on its own, pissing off her friends and making her alone. Oh yeah, and her friends start dying as well. Looks like there is a curse on Laura and it is one she cannot unfollow.

Also starring William Moseley, Connor Paolo, Sean Marquette, Shashawnee Hall, Susan Danford, Nicholas Pauling, and Lee Raviv as young Marina.

New Girl
You know those new girls, always…posting videos of dark woods, mirrors, and baby dolls to the internet.

There was a technical issue in my theater when I watched this movie, so the first five minutes had no sound. And with no sound, the movie gave a clear picture of where it was going and how bad it would be on the way there. It also looked hilarious with over exaggerated gasps and zoom ins on our main characters face. When it was restarted with noise, the damage had been done, and I knew too soon that this movie was a piece of shit.

Friend Request is one of the modern horror films where no one is bad or deserving of their problems and people just go and die. I am not saying horror films need morals, but really, I need some sort of motivation or anything for this film to exist. This story is that Laura gets suddenly unlucky for no reason, there is nothing she can do to stop it, and her life is now fucked. Hooray! Hard to get behind that concept.

As for the deaths? They also blow. A lot of them are done in excessively dark light, so viewers cannot build suspense. Scary sounds and not being able to tell what is happening is not scary, especially when it screams out being a budget reason and we have to use our own imagination to fill in the gaps. Nothing is rewarding out of this film. It doesn’t even have any strong messages about the technology age, bullying, social media, nothing. Just a cash grab on getting people in by having Facebook references.

0 out of 4.


The story of It affected my childhood, without ever seeing it. I recognized it as a scary movie with a clown based on its advertising. But I heard other things about the miniseries. First, that it was an incredibly long movie! It had TWO VHS tapes, and I didn’t know it was made for TV and over two nights. The idea was unheard of for me (because at that young age, I didn’t know there were movies over 3 hours long).

I was also told that It wasn’t really a clown, but a spider. I don’t know if I can verify that still, I just still believe it because I was told it and fuck, spiders are scary.

And I almost read It. Or at least audiobook’d it, planned on doing it after The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy books, but had such a disappointing time with them that I switched to authors that I knew and it was on the back burner. Now, in retrospect, I am glad I never read It, because now It is now a new movie, and I don’t need some silly source material mucking up my experience. With the sequel coming out in a few years, I will just have to hold off on that book for a few more years, and then, maybe, I will finally give Stephen King a chance.

I didn’t grow up in the gutter like this clown thing, but I did once go to a night club called Da Guttah.

In the small community of Derry, Maine, a sinister entity lives and preys on children, much to the apathy of the citizens there. Poor little Georgie (Jackson Robert Scott) is his first victim, and he just wanted to play with a boat in the rain. Well, after that, our film flashes to the end of that school year, with Georgie’s older brother, Bill (Jaeden Lieberher), still shook up by his brother’s disappearance, but his family seems to have already moved on. And it isn’t just Georgie. Other kids have started disappearing, at a seemingly alarming rate, but again, the community just shrugs its shoulders.

And with this summer vacation, Bill wants to use this extra time to map out some sewers or the nearby quarry to search for his brother. His friends include Richie (Finn Wolfhard), a smart ass with a loose mouth, Eddie (Jack Dylan Grazer) a hypochondriac thanks to his mother, and Stanley (Wyatt Oleff), who is Jewish, and that is his characteristic that matters I guess. They are quickly joined by a few other “misfits” in their community, Ben (Jeremy Ray Taylor) who is fat and a new kid, and Beverly (Sophia Lillis) a girl who lives in an abusive home and who is rumored to be a slut. It takes a lot longer in the film before we are also joined by Mike (Chosen Jacobs) who is home schooled and black, but completes their little posse.

And hey, eventually they all start getting strange events happening to them. Visions of a clown who wants to eat them, or other fears rising out and seeming so realistic. Good old Pennywise (Bill Skarsgård), with his clown makeup and sharp teeth. He took Georgie! Through some research they find out that something terrible happens in their town every 27 years or so that takes out a lot of kids. It is surprising that no one has connected the dots. But they need to work together and over come their fears to stop this terror, if they want to survive and protect the future of Derry, Mai

Also featuring a few chaps as older kid bullies: Nicholas Hamilton, Logan Thompson, and Jake Sim.

And in this scene, the kids recreate their favorite movie from the future: Sinister!

By the time you are reading this review, It has already been out for a few weeks and you have already heard good things about It. You know It is good, you have statistically probably already seen It. The film is fresh, well shot, scary and ominous when it needs to be, and it feels like there are really kids running the show.

And kids running the show leads to a few of the small issues I had. Kids are stupid, so we are allowed to accept it when they do something stupid during a scary situation. That is the worst part of horror movies, watch a character who has shown to be one who uses their brain, who throws it all out of the window when they get a spooks or when they choose to investigate something odd. So much of the plot moves just due to characters being dumbasses that it is frustrating.

The film is decently scary, and again, great to look at. The Georgie scene to start the film really set the tone and also would quickly position itself away from the previous iteration for those who loved the original. With a large cast of characters, I am surprised that so many actually felt like real people. Unfortunately some of the lesser group members, namely Mike and Stanley, feel like they are limited by their obvious differences instead of actual personalities or story lines.

I am still excited for a sequel and thought it was a lot better than a lot of other recent horror films, but at the same time, it is limited in scope based on the story of the book I guess. I just want people to do the right/smart thing every once in awhile.

3 out of 4.